Certain games do not insist on reinventing the wheel and are content as a fair tribute to the games that influenced them. And that’s fine. Conceived by the hands of small Taiwanese studio Glass Heart Games, Vigil: The Longest Night is just that: it does not hide its influences on the Metroidvania and Soulsborne formulas, nor does it strive to bring original ideas, but it fulfills the fundamental purpose of having fun.
As a huge fan of both sub-genres, I’d like to record my outburst: the more games we’ve inspired by the two formulas, the better. I’m afraid to talk about anything that has Soulsborne and Castlevania traits, so Vigil made a good impression on me early on. If you liked Hollow Knight, Salt and Sanctuary, Death’s Gambit and Blasphemous – just to name a few names that came to mind now – know that Vigil has the potential to be your new xodó, even if it has flaws wide open . Check out our full review.
Lovecraftian spices and somewhat old-fashioned exploration
In Longest Night, the story embraces a darker and haunting tone to develop the character Leila, a vigilant young woman whose goal is to save her birthplace from grotesque creatures and mysterious entities. Without going too deep into the details to avoid spoilers, the protagonist’s job becomes even more difficult when she realizes that her world is no longer the same as before.
With a slight Lovecraftian flavor à la Bloodborne and full of references to Taiwanese culture, Vigil presents the storyline expected from games of the type, shown at a slow pace as the player explores the details. Like any other soul, the world unfolds through item descriptions and enigmatic dialogues that are renewed with each new approach – rest assured that the lyrics are in Brazilian Portuguese. The difference is that there are many NPCs scattered around the map here that not only describe the plot, but also play a vital role in guiding the heroine to the next goal (although the paths are not always clear).
Exploration is one of the most important aspects of a Metroidvania, but it doesn’t work very well in Vigil. Whether it is due to the lack of orientation or the confusing display of some sections on the map, the fact is that the high difficulty in this regard seems more of a technical limitation and a bad design decision than something deliberate and designed to the player’s perception To test.
Part of the magic of this genre, of course, is that you feel lost, disoriented enough to revisit all the regions already discovered in search of a passage that was not available until then. In Vigil, however, you are not equipped with the resources to unravel the next step of the journey without getting frustrated first. It’s a geographically generous game, with a vast area to explore, but hampered by a limited, almost non-existent navigation system.